Most observers predicted a tight one goal game and that’s what we got in the first leg marked by a moment of brilliance that will live long in the memory.
Still, it’s only halftime and I’ll have more on the Galaxy and the MLS playoffs in general in Tuesday’s column.
— LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy) October 25, 2013
U.S. international Herculez Gomez sounds ready for the match-up. Are you?
Relive tonight (You know Nicolas Munoz will want to after a hat trick inside four minutes then adding a fourth before half time to wrap things up, if not Galaxy coach Bruce Arena):
@LAGalaxy's Bruce Arena, asked if his team underestimated Isidro Metapan: "I did not … and if our team did, it certainly showed."
— Scott French (@ScottJFrench) October 25, 2013
Incidentally, Chivas USA announced Friday that striker Jose Manuel Rivera — who has made all of three starts for the Goats this season — will miss Sunday’s game and the rest of the season after undergoing surgery for a fractured left foot he suffered Thursday in training.
It’s fair to say the come from behind Dallas win over Chivas USA in Carson Wednesday may have more significance for Galaxy fans than fans of the Goats at this stage of the season. With the win Dallas pulled within a point of the Galaxy in the incredibly tight division.
It was typical Chivas USA, getting a goal in front on a storybook restart to an MLS career by the re-signed Brian de la Fuente and then caving in to Dallas pressure with an evaporating defense that had goalkeeper Dan Kennedy looking appalled (and rightfully so).
Timing is everything.
Two hat tricks in two weeks by Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane respectively must have MLS rivals wondering whether the Galaxy’s knack of peaking at exactly the right time over the last two seasons could lead to a third successive MLS title.
The Galaxy threw off the unimaginative shackles of a sterile first half to come from behind in relentless fashion and run away with a 4-2 game with the type of attacking soccer remniscent of those halycon free-scoring days of 1997 and 1998, apt for the debut of the retro-style third strip Saturday in Carson.
The updated MLS standings.
Next for the Galaxy: against Costa Rican club Cartaginas Tuesday at StubHub Center in their CONCACAF Champions League opener. More on that in Tuesday’s column.
The news conference announcing the move was perfunctory since the move was widely anticipated anyway.
Everyone thanked everyone else.
And coach Bruce Arena told Omar “welcome” and thanked former DP David Beckham for making the designation possible when he retired and vacated the DP slot.
Arena observed that the unspecified pay raise Gonzalez will receive will reward him “accordingly” for his level of play on the back four.
“When we drafted him in 2009, we thought he’d be a good player in this league,” Arena said. “This signing today is significant for all American players. It gives them something to shoot for … This is what our young kids are going to aspire to.”
Gonzalez, 24, is the first American defender named a DP.
“It’s really an honor to be named the third DP here at the Galaxy,” he said.
Reporter Phil Collin has the full story.
Gonzalez by the numbers:
- 136 — Number of Galaxy games he’s appeared in.
- 12 — Number of U.S. caps he has collected (all but two of those appearances came this year).
- Eight– Number of MLS goals he’s scored.
- Three — Number of times the 2009 MLS Rookie of the year and 2011 Defender of the year has been named to the MLS All-Star team.
The Galaxy will play Real Salt Lake Saturday in Carson.
Gonzalez is the tall guy in the middle of the back line in case you were wondering (I kid).